Structure of Marketing Plan and its Need
The planning of market activities is an essential task and should be performed with great care and attention. But before that it is important to understand the objective of market planning.
Purpose of Planning :
A Marketing plan should have a clear objective that defines the aim of the business and make it measurable, over the next 12 months. The aim may be to grow the database, increase the sales coming from existing customers, build awareness, and launch a new product or to relaunch a brand.
Doing research is the most important task of marketing. The bottom line of this plan is to understand your market/s and then plan out your activities. So it is a wise step to plan everything and work accordingly.
You need to understand your competition so you can position yourself against their offerings. You should show your points of difference and this can make easy for the customer to decide the options.
You need to profile your markets so you can understand their needs. Once you have performed this task you will be able to identify your ideal customer and this information will be very beneficial for your business. This understanding will help you to tailor your offerings and ensure that you are able to focus your energy in the right areas.
Brand promise is the key to any good plan. What is your point of difference or value proposition? These are some questions whose answers should be provided.
You should define some tactics for the marketing plan and that will be your action plan.
It is very important to track to see progress and refine.
Communication plan to target markets is very necessary.
Work on your plan, it is an evolving ever changing, active document.
Your task is completed and you can observe the difference.
Some Useful Tips:
You should allow yourself a couple of months to write the plan, even if it's only a few pages long because taking time will be helpful in providing best results. Developing the plan is the most complex part of marketing. After developing the plan execution of this plan has some challenges which may include media planning and buying.
All are players in the company so it is very essential to keep your plan confidential. Firms typically keep their marketing plans very, very private for various reasons. Either they're too skimpy and management would be embarrassed to have them see the light of day, or they're solid and packed with information which would make them extremely valuable to the competition. This planning comes under the marketing strategies and it can create miracles in the field of business.
You can't do the task of planning without getting many people involved. Views should be taken from everybody as views are important in decision making. No matter what your size, get feedback from all parts of your company i.e. finance, manufacturing, personnel, supply and so on--in addition to marketing itself. This is especially important because it will take all aspects of your company to make your marketing plan work. Your key people can provide realistic input on what's achievable and how your goals can be reached, and they can share any insights they have on any potential, as-yet-unrealized marketing opportunities, adding another dimension to your plan.
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